Patient-specific ascending aortic intervention criteria

Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2024 May 3;65(5):ezae162. doi: 10.1093/ejcts/ezae162.


Objectives: Ascending aortic aneurysms pose a different risk to each patient. We aim to provide personalized risk stratification for such patients based on sex, age, body surface area and aneurysm location (root versus ascending).

Methods: Root and ascending diameters, and adverse aortic events (dissection, rupture, death) of ascending thoracic aortic aneurysm patients were analysed. Aortic diameter was placed in context vis-a-vis the normal distribution in the general population with similar sex, age and body surface area, by conversion to z scores. These were correlated of major adverse aortic events, producing risk curves with 'hinge points' of steep risk, constructed separately for the aortic root and mid-ascending aorta.

Results: A total of 1162 patients were included. Risk curves unveiled generalized thresholds of z = 4 for the aortic root and z = 5 for the mid-ascending aorta. These correspond to individualized thresholds of less than the standard criterion of 5.5 cm in the vast majority of patients. Indicative results include a 75-year-old typical male with 2.1 m2 body surface area, who was found to be at increased risk of adverse events if root diameter exceeds 5.15 cm, or mid ascending exceeds 5.27 cm. An automated calculator is presented, which identifies patients at high risk of adverse events based on sex, age, height, weight, and root and ascending size.

Conclusions: This analysis exploits a large sample of aneurysmal patients, demographic features of the general population, pre-dissection diameter, discrimination of root and supracoronary segments, and statistical tools to extract thresholds of increased risk tailor-made for each patient.

Keywords: Ascending aortic aneurysm; Calculator; Patient specific; Risk prediction; Surgical threshold; z score.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aorta / diagnostic imaging
  • Aorta / pathology
  • Aorta / surgery
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic* / diagnosis
  • Aortic Aneurysm, Thoracic* / surgery
  • Aortic Dissection / surgery
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment / methods
  • Risk Factors